South Africa in Australia, 2012-13

Hazlewood replaces Cummins in squad

Daniel Brettig and Brydon Coverdale

November 5, 2012

Comments: 51 | Text size: A | A

Josh Hazlewood finished with figures of 1 for 9, Sydney Sixers v Yorkshire, Group B, Champions League Twenty20, Cape Town, October 16, 2012
Josh Hazlewood turned plenty of heads at the Champions League © Getty Images
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Players/Officials: Josh Hazlewood
Series/Tournaments: South Africa tour of Australia
Teams: Australia

Pat Cummins' loss is Josh Hazlewood's gain. The back stress fracture that will keep Cummins out of the home summer has in turn elevated Hazlewood to Australia's mandatory five-man pace battery ahead of the Gabba Test against South Africa, and may yet see him make his debut in Perth.

Already in Brisbane for New South Wales' Sheffield Shield match against Queensland, Hazlewood was told to remain in town instead of flying home with the rest of the Blues' non-Test players on Sunday evening.

Australia's hierarchy have been keen to have five fast bowlers on hand at each Test match this summer, not only in case of injury but also to allow the youngest paceman the chance to learn from the others. The national coach Mickey Arthur said Hazlewood's presence emulated Mitchell Starc's in-squad education last summer.

"It could be [that he plays] at some point in the series," Arthur said. "The theory around Josh is exactly what we did last year with Mitchell Starc. We thought that was a real good case study. Mitchell Starc was around us, he was ready to go when we needed him. Josh is very much in that role. Josh will be with us until the end of day one.

"We see a very bright future for Josh. We want Josh to feel what it's like around the Australian cricket set-up. We want him to train with us. We want him to feel the intensity and feel the build-up, so hopefully when he comes into the environment he knows what to expect and is ready to go from the first time we pick him."

Though his week with the squad in Brisbane is likely to be largely developmental in purpose, Hazlewood is likely to play for NSW in their Shield encounter with Victoria in Sydney from November 13 to 16, and may then be a chance to debut for Australia in the third Test against South Africa in Perth.

Hazlewood's probable schedule was that originally intended for Cummins, mapped out some weeks ago before the glut of Twenty20 matches for country and club that ended with the 19-year-old nursing a major injury in November for the second time in as many summers.

First glimpsed in Australian colours in 2010 when he played a single ODI against England at Southampton as a teenager, Hazlewood has wrestled with a series of injuries since, but at 21 appears to be maturing into the sort of dependable seam and bounce merchant who could balance the speed of James Pattinson and the swing of Mitchell Starc in a future bowling attack.

He was consistently the most impressive Sydney Sixers bowler during the Champions League, plucking seven wickets at 16.17 while conceding a miserly 4.70 run an over.

Daniel Brettig and Brydon Coverdale are assistant editors at ESPNcricinfo.

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Posted by dunger.bob on (November 8, 2012, 3:26 GMT)

@ HatsforBats on (November 05 2012, 04:50 AM GMT) : That is as good an explanation of this mystifying move that I am going to see I think. It makes perfect sense when you look at it that way actually.

Ps. I hope he goes well if he gets a chance because I played cricket with and against his dad who was a fine cricketer and one of natures gentlemen to boot.

Posted by zenboomerang on (November 7, 2012, 7:14 GMT)

Upon reflection, Halzewood being the 2nd spare bowler is here at the Gabba just to get time around the team - wonder if NC-N will get the same treatment in Perth? or Bird, et al in Hobart? or McDonald et al in Melbourne?... Then this will make some sense...

Posted by zenboomerang on (November 7, 2012, 7:13 GMT)

Seems schools out with some of the comments... NSW has 34.5% of Oz's population, Tassie has 2.2% of Oz pop. yet Tassie has 3 out of 11 players = 27% (born & trained - Punter, Hilfy, Wade) to NSW's 4 of 11 = 36%... This obviously changes a bit with players coming in & out of the team... Seems NSW has a very fair proportion of the players - though why is it that some who profess to live in another State (especially if you are a Qlder) get so pro-NSW vocal every time this NSW issue comes up is really quite amusing...

Posted by   on (November 6, 2012, 11:56 GMT)

NSW produces better players, get over it everyone. Bradman, Mcgrath, Simpson, Waugh, Benaud, O'reilly, Taylor and then we continue on to the players that had to move out of NSW just to get a consistent game, Border, Bevan and gilchrist! Victoria's done well with test players recently, White, Holland and Quiney will be the same one hit wonder

Posted by VivGilchrist on (November 6, 2012, 11:09 GMT)

@Jono Makin, well lets pick him after his stats (ie results) come up to scratch, and not insult the other 15 bowlers that are better than him.

Posted by   on (November 6, 2012, 6:39 GMT)

To those wondering about his inclusion in the setup (something quite different to actually playing).. have you seen the guy bowl lately? Tall, bouncy 135kmph+, nips it around and is very accurate. Its only a matter of time before his stats come up to scratch. I'm sure many of us were all thinking the same of Pattinson and Starc 18 months ago... Look at thier development in that period. Hazlewood is the McGrath type the Aussie attack has been desperately lacking. I'd love to see him play in Perth, better bowler than Cummins i'd say.

Posted by Meety on (November 6, 2012, 5:58 GMT)

@TheFang on (November 06 2012, 02:27 AM GMT) - btw, Khawaja's career FC record was around 50 when he got selected for Oz, Warner's was almost 60. Steve Smith's ave was around 50 as well.

Posted by Meety on (November 6, 2012, 5:53 GMT)

@TheFang on (November 06 2012, 02:27 AM GMT) - you bag Warner's selection, yet name an Ozzy batsmen with better credentials who has NOT been selected for Oz since Warner started playing FC cricket?? You can't - there was NONE! There is no pro-NSW conspiracy - just a bunch of insecure whingers with nothing beter to do! The only state that has any justifiable gripe is QLD, who has not had a Test cricketer since Ryan Harris (technically Sth Ozzy) or really since MJ, & no batsmen selected since Shane Watson.

Posted by Meety on (November 6, 2012, 5:45 GMT)

Players I have classified as Test failures are 1. Young, 2. PWilson, 3. B Williams, 4. Tait, 5. Cullen, 6. Rogers, 7. Casson*, 8. White, 9. krezja, 10. Hughes*, 11. North*, 12. McGain, 13. SSmith*, 14. Doherty*, 15. Beer*, 16. Khawaja*, 17. Marsh. I have left * next to players that either could turn their career around or I felt was harsh to label. It's been 12mths since I did the analyisis - so I have no debutants since S Marsh. So I would say it is quite clear - that whilst NSW have had the most debutants, they have a good success rate & therefor no bias. We should look more at the WA/Tas bias as they are the most unproductive producers of Baggy Green careers! QLD, NSW & then SA, have the best success rates. IF Hughes is a "dim-bulb" - what does that say of our Shield bowlers who have been hammered by him for about 5 years? Marsh is labelled "average"? He has been woeful, arguably the worst credentialled batsmen to represent Oz in 25yrs! His scores were like binary code against India

Posted by Meety on (November 6, 2012, 5:34 GMT)

@TheFang on (November 06 2012, 02:29 AM GMT) - what a load of garbage! Please explain how there is a NSW bias when there hasn't been a NSW selector (apart from Clarke recently) in ages. The best State for "successful" converts to the Baggy Green is QLD - all other states have more than their fair share of failures. I did some work on this of the 51 debutants from Young to S Marsh. In my opinion, there has been 16 "failures" (cricketers far better than you or I but just haven't made it in Tests - yet) since S Young. NSW has 31% of the dubutants since then & of which 25% of the failures (which is the 2nd best "conversion rate behind QLD) - QLD has had 16% of debutants - no failures, I consider Scotty Muller to not be a failure - he had a S/R of 49.7 & Adam Dale - he had an ave of 31. The worst states are Tas & WA with a 50% failure rate. This is a slightly subjective comment - but I will give some detail! TBC

Posted by Moppa on (November 6, 2012, 5:01 GMT)

@TheFang, hard to know where to start, but Quiney's numbers are almost identical to (in fact slightly worse than) Cowan's when selected for Australia (from Tasmania) and comfortably worse than Hughes (avg. 59 when first selected for Aust), Warner (avg 60 when selected) or Khawaja's (avg. 51 at end of first Test). Maybe Quiney has an aunt from Albury....?

Posted by TheFang on (November 6, 2012, 2:29 GMT)

Hughes, Dim Bulb with an agricultural technique who has been given more chances than a traffic cop would give to a blonde with big knockers. A non blue would never have been given the second chance let alone the third and now with no form at all we have the Sydney journos braying for a fourth! If there were no blue bias he would need to pile on the runs for a decade to even get a mention in a newspaper article let alone a spot in the Aus A team.


Marsh, average but at least average for more than 2 seasons.

So that's 5 poor, average, or unseasoned players to one. Noooo there is no blue bias.

Haven't checked the all rounders but I can hardly type Steve Smith without laughing. Couldn't hit the cut strip with the ball and couldn't play a non-slog with the bat when picked. Oh but now he's a batsman who bowls a bit laughable. Should never play Test Cricket for Australia again, certainly not until he posts several seasons of heavy scoring. (Or at least one).

Posted by TheFang on (November 6, 2012, 2:27 GMT)

@Moppa, Have a look at who has debuted as a batsman since Craig White in 2008, I could go back further but it would just be even more embarrassing to those who don't think the blue cap gets you to the front of the queue faster than runs in the Shield. Bluebags Cowan, Av less than 30 in tests less than 40 FC bats like a tortoise, Still in the team must have a blue cap in the closet.

Warner, less than 50 Average in 10is first class games when first picked. Decent cricketer but if he wasn't from N.S.W. he would have had to post those numbers for at least half a decade rather than half a season.

Khawaja, averaging around 40 over a couple of seasons when picked. See Warner.


Posted by Meety on (November 6, 2012, 2:02 GMT)

@Moppa on (November 06 2012, 00:18 AM GMT) - I think in the Hilditch era, it would of de-motivated players. If you go along with the reports in the papers & on this site, the NSP & Performance Mgr are communicating their decisions well. I think there was a touch of opportunism in this decision re: Hazlewood.

Posted by TheFang on (November 6, 2012, 1:51 GMT)

@Moppa, Steve O'Keefe the unluckiest cricketer in OZ? I guess he might be given that all it usually takes to get a baggy green is to first get a blue bag, so yeah maybe you're right.

Posted by Moppa on (November 6, 2012, 0:18 GMT)

You also make a fair point @Dashgar. Bird, Cutting and Copeland, amongst others, should certainly be ahead of Hazlewood for the Test team at the moment if the back-up player was genuinely likely to be needed (touch wood!). Assuming no injuries, the only relevant questions here are: 1) which player will benefit most from four days around the Australian squad; 2) do these selections demotivate players who might feel they have racked up better performances than the 'golden child' picked on potential. I suspect: 1) Hazlewood will benefit far more than mature bowlers like Butterworth, Copeland and even Bird (who's 26); 2) probably not, more likely than anything to motivate them. For those chucking around the NSW favouritism conspiracy theory, what about Steve O'Keefe? Considered by many the unluckiest cricketer in Oz.

Posted by scotty-wilson1 on (November 5, 2012, 23:12 GMT)

I don't understand this, they shouldn't be picking guys who show potential against the best team in the world, pick guys who have come good on their potential and are performing at state level. Butterworth, faulkner and bird are much better options. But they don't play for nsw.

Posted by Dashgar on (November 5, 2012, 14:40 GMT)

@Moppa, I know where you're coming from but the Australian team has got to the point now that fast bowlers should need to do a lot more than "look good in a T20 tournament". Australia has a bunch of seriously good young quicks who have exceptional First Class stats, give one of them the experience of an Australian squad. Not some random who hasn't done anything of note in a 4 year First Class career.

Posted by zenboomerang on (November 5, 2012, 11:58 GMT)

@dsig3... Fully agree with your comms on his T20 form & I am fully supportive of that - but we are talking about a completely different game in Test matches... Also saw Starc do some blistering spells last BBL (& a supporter) but unsure if he could perform over this summers 6 Test matches at the level of Hilfy & Sidds - the young guys will get there, but we need to give them some time...

Posted by Meety on (November 5, 2012, 10:39 GMT)

@Hippiantor on (November 05 2012, 08:45 AM GMT) - well said. I agree.

Posted by Moppa on (November 5, 2012, 10:36 GMT)

A lot of people seem to have missed the point. Hazlewood hasn't been selected - he's there purely for development (and, yes, as back up, but let's hope we're not down to our fifth paceman by Friday). I agree with several commenting here, while his numbers don't stack up with Bird, Copeland, Faulkner etc, Hazlewood almost certainly has more long-term potential. With bowlers you have to look past numbers sometimes. @zenboomerang, the point made in the article about Hazlewood's bowling in the CLT20 could be more to do with how be bowled, extracting bounce and beating the bat in the early overs, than stats or numbers: "consistently the most impressive". When Cummins broke into the NSW team in T20 in 2010-11, his pace and accuracy was impressive irrespective of the format.

Posted by TheFang on (November 5, 2012, 9:24 GMT)

How much did the Argus report cost? Reward form, naaaaaa reward wearing a blue cap.

Posted by   on (November 5, 2012, 9:23 GMT)

bluebagger......... one word faulkner.....

Posted by PrasPunter on (November 5, 2012, 9:21 GMT)

"Even though i dont know hazzlewood i can tell he is a pretty useless bowler. " - @ pappu-bhai . on similar lines can you enlighten us on what he will have for dinner tonight ? Is that a Nostradamus-like prediction or something ?

Posted by Hippiantor on (November 5, 2012, 8:45 GMT)

I don't think this is a indication of his selection chances this summer. At least I hope not. Remember that Starc is the fourth pace bowler in the group. Bird and Johnson are more likely to be picked than Hazelwood. I think it's just CA's plan to have an extra "young" fast bowler around the group. I believe they have recognized the huge potential in Hazelwood and he would IMO benefit more the bowlers previously mentioned by the below commenters. This isn't dissimilar to the tours Pattinson went on.

Posted by dsig3 on (November 5, 2012, 8:25 GMT)

@zenboomerang I dont care much for those stats either, but if you saw him bowl at the tournament you would be impressed too. He totally changed my view on him, he looked like a different bowler than the one who played the one ODI for Australia.

Posted by PFEL on (November 5, 2012, 8:18 GMT)

Why don't we just dispense with the formalities and merge the Australian Board and Selectors with those of New South Wales, it would save some time

Posted by maddinson on (November 5, 2012, 7:41 GMT)

Didn't surprise by inclusion of Hazlewood, he was identified in 2010 by CA but subsequent injuries saw Pattinson, Starc and Cummins making test debuts ahead of him. Now fully fit Hazlewood is back where he belongs, I like the way how NSP picking fast bowlers and keeping them with Australian squad for few months before exposing them in International arena. Pattinson and Starc are similarly picked and developed before getting there test caps, pretty sure young McDermott won't be far behind.

Posted by Pappu_bhai on (November 5, 2012, 7:11 GMT)

Hazzlewood?This guy is not good enough and that shows lack of aussise bowling if one cummins is injured.

Even though i dont know hazzlewood i can tell he is a pretty useless bowler.

Posted by Ozcricketwriter on (November 5, 2012, 7:06 GMT)

Agreed that Hazlewood shouldn't be in the top 10 best fast bowlers for Australia - but at his age there is the chance that he can improve. I would personally love to see them go with James Faulkner, who has a great record and can bat a treat too. Wouldn't have been the worst choice as replacement for Shane Watson either.

Posted by zenboomerang on (November 5, 2012, 7:06 GMT)

@Daniel Brettig & Brydon Coverdale... When supposedly "writers" put up 20/20 stats as a reason for a players possible inclusion for a Test position, then we all realize that you have completely lost the plot & run out of any facts/stats that could be of any use for an article... You have dropped to the ignominy of village cricket reporting...

Posted by zenboomerang on (November 5, 2012, 7:05 GMT)

@Jimmy_Jim & other similar posts... Agree & Hazlewood doesn't deserve this position atm... Butterworth the most under-rated bowler (allrounder) in Oz, McKay & Hastings have to be considerations, Bird & Faulkner have been good, NC-N & McDermott have done the hard yards & put up match winning performance... If CA are looking for youth then there are others with better performances while there are also very experienced bowlers with much better stats...

Posted by Big-Dog on (November 5, 2012, 6:25 GMT)

What has Hazelwood done to deserve selection? Bird, Butterworth et al will be wondering what they have to do.

Posted by   on (November 5, 2012, 6:24 GMT)

What does Jackson Bird have to do to get a game?

Posted by Street_Hawk on (November 5, 2012, 6:09 GMT)

ridiculous selection...what is up with the selector these days that people get selected based on potential and not India, Rohit Sharma was consistently chosen because of his potential (or lack of it) and consistently failed to perform up to the expectation..Raina gets selected for tests based on his T20 performance..crazy stuff!!! similarly, in Australia fast bowlers are chosen based on potential who are very injury prone..if I were to try new bowlers beside Pattinson, Siddle and Starc, I would go with Faulkner, Butterworth, Bird and McDermott (in that order)..Butterworth looks very much in the mould of McGrath (with better batting)..seriously what's wrong with selectors these days

Posted by Chris_P on (November 5, 2012, 6:09 GMT)

@Jimmy_Jim Toss around all the averages you want, they are only worthwhile if measured in the same context. Hazelwood, unlike Bird bowls on dead wickets. The pitch in Hobart, when prepared is a bowler's dream. The SCG is never like that for quicks. Same for Copeland, Starc & Cummins. Bird's average at the SCG is way above Hazelwood's. Josh Hazelwood is something special in the making, Bird I am afraid is not, although a very good bowler, will not or will ever be that next level (IMHO). Hazelwood's action is similar to McGrath's, about his height & is on the improve at 21 years of age. He won't be playing, but don't write him off. He is the real deal.

Posted by jonesy2 on (November 5, 2012, 6:02 GMT)

hazlewood is awesome, arguably the best of the lot but that is hard to say because of the outstanding talent of pattinson, starc and cummins just to name those three. has obviously had tough times with injury himself but seems to be well and truly over them touch wood, he was bowling very quickly in south africa around 145 and close to 150 on the occasion and thats not even his game, thats just a bonus.

Posted by DylanBrah on (November 5, 2012, 5:13 GMT)

What does form in the CLT20 have to do with being a serviceable Test bowler? As everyone else has said we have bucket loads of talented and PROVEN shield performers more worthy of selection. This is absolutely ridiculous!

Posted by HatsforBats on (November 5, 2012, 4:50 GMT)

I'm happy for the lad, he shows promise. But I have to agree with everyone else, there are plenty of quicks around the country with better claims to a spot. The only thing I can think of is that the NSP are looking to build a diverse squad rather than picking similar bowlers. They have quick skiddy swing bowlers in Pattinson, Sid, & Hilf so Bird & McDermott are out. Starc is the chosen lefty so Faulkner is out. Hazlewood is the only really tall Stuart Clark type in the country and has age on his side.

Posted by Dashgar on (November 5, 2012, 4:09 GMT)

Hazelwood? Surely there are at least 6-10 fast bowlers ahead of him in the pecking order. Bird, McDermott, Hastings, Coulter-Nile, Copeland, Richardson, Johnson, Butterworth, Cutting to name a few. Hazelwood averages over 30, he isn't all that quick and hasn't had a single breakout season to prove he's even a top end Shield bowler, let alone a test bowler. Is the NSW quota system back in place?

Posted by   on (November 5, 2012, 4:00 GMT)

what does jackson bird have to do ? he is australia's philander

Posted by crh8971 on (November 5, 2012, 3:42 GMT)

So match figures of 2 for 100 on a green top Gabba wicket in a shield match that was done and dusted inside three days is enough to get you into the test squad? Couple that with a season record of 7 wickets from 3 matches, not a single 5 for in his career and an average above 30. Sure he is only 21 and 6 foot 6 but surely some history of first class performance needs to come into consideration. Why not give a guy like Jackson Bird a shot who topped the wicket takers last season, has 14 wickets at 23 this season and 5 times has taken 5 wickets in an innings.

Posted by getaclue on (November 5, 2012, 3:23 GMT)

anyone saying Quiney is having a quiet start to the year needs to look at Hazlewood. Has done nothing this first class season and has modest career stats at best. Clearly a golden child

Posted by bobagorof on (November 5, 2012, 3:20 GMT)

Hazlewood is another bowler with a lot of promise, but he's yet to put in a consistent run of good form in First Class matches. I really like the look of him - in the Glenn McGrath mold, from reports - but to date he's been chipping in with 3 wickets a match and averages 30. I'd like to see Alistair McDermott being given a run - he opens the bowling for Queensland and averages over 4 wickets a match at 20.

Posted by Ozcricketwriter on (November 5, 2012, 2:37 GMT)

So, what, we are a chance to play 4 fast bowlers now? Awesome. I'd rather Clint McKay to Hazlewood; but he isn't the worst choice and could do well, you never know. Hazlewood does have youth on his side, and at least he is test standard.

Posted by   on (November 5, 2012, 2:30 GMT)

australia have the best young fast bowlers coming through like pattinson, cummins, starc, hazlewood , mcdermott, bird and cutting .

Posted by Rabbito on (November 5, 2012, 2:14 GMT)

Good choice by the selectors, i like this guy. the way he bowled in the CLT20 was awesome. and he looks to be over the injuries that has plagued him over the last few years. looks to be a future champ. its going to be hard to wait a few years to see this guy, starc pattinson and patrick all playing together!!....

Posted by Meety on (November 5, 2012, 1:24 GMT)

Really happy for him. I doubt he'll get a start against the Saffa (or even the Lankans) unless we have some injuries over the next few weeks. I would LIKE to think that this is an attempt to work with him in the same way that Starc & Patto have been integrated into the Test structure. The negative at this point with Hazlewood is, despite being the best pacer at the Champ League, he has yet to take a 5 wicket haul in FC cricket. I am sure a big haul is just around the corner for him, but I really do think he is still to raw for Tests at the moment. Great prospect for about 2 years time IMO!

Posted by Jimmy_Jim on (November 5, 2012, 1:08 GMT)

Really? Why choose an average FC bowler? There are at least 5 other YOUNG Australian bowlers who have been pushing for a spot over the last couple of seasons and have been given nothing. Hazlewood has 41 wicket at 31.51 with only TWO 4-fers. Jackson Bird has 77 wickets at 20.56 with four 4-fers, five 5-fers (two 10 wicket hauls). Nathan Coulter-Nile, 68 wickets at 26.89. James Faulkner 100 wickets at 22.93. Luke Butterworth 177 wickets at 23.67 (plus two centuries and 8 half-centuries at 28.52). Trent Copeland (though has lost some form) 125 at 25.38. Alister McDermott, 53 at 20.54. Start giving those who perform some chances...

Posted by Heisenburg on (November 5, 2012, 1:03 GMT)

This ridiculous, choosing Hazlewood on T20 form? Especially when we have far better first class performers, Bird, McDermott, Coulter-Nile, Faulkner, Butterworth

Posted by Artiebees on (November 5, 2012, 1:00 GMT)

Must have been picked because he was in Brisbane for his Shield Match. Otherwise his selection is a no brainer.

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Daniel Brettig Assistant editor Daniel Brettig had been a journalist for eight years when he joined ESPNcricinfo, but his fascination with cricket dates back to the early 1990s, when his dad helped him sneak into the family lounge room to watch the end of day-night World Series matches well past bedtime. Unapologetically passionate about indie music and the South Australian Redbacks, Daniel's chief cricketing achievement was to dismiss Wisden Almanack editor Lawrence Booth in the 2010 Ashes press match in Perth - a rare Australian victory that summer.
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